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Doesn't John 3:5 require baptism for salvation?

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  • #16
    Yes, Jesus was sinless, but, according to Jewish Law, (and Jesus was a Jew), He had to be ceremonially cleansed in order to take His place as High Priest to the little flock - the Jewish believers.

    John's baptism became a watershed issue for Israel. Luke 7:29, 30 says, "And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him."

    This is the reason that water baptism was associated with salvation and the remission of sins. Salvation was through faith, but the only way they could express their faith was by doing what God required - preparing to function as "a royal priesthood." First must come the cleansing; then the service. Ezekial 36:25 promises Israel: "Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you." The sprinkling with clean water was the necessary first step of faith in forming the nucleus of the coming kingdom, the group of Jewish believers which Christ called His "little flock."

    "Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." (Luke 12:32)

    The next step in preparing this believing remnant was Matthew 3:11's baptism with the Spirit. This baptism would correspond to the second rite of consecration to the priesthood - the anointing. The baptism with the Spirit would provide the needed empowering for the nation's coming service. This explains why our Lord's post-resurrection ministry ties these two things - the baptism of repentance and the anointing of the Holy Spirit - so closely together.

    "And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils, they shall speak with new tongues" (Mark 16:15-17).

    After the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, Peter's appeal to Israel is clearly a further development of John's call to repentance:

    "Then Peter said unto them, repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." (Acts 2:38) Here the order is clear: first the washing - "repent and be baptized" - and then the anointing - "ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."

    Those who feel the role of water baptism somehow changed after Pentecost should notice that the pre-and post-resurrection baptisms were identically the same. "Repent, and be baptized ... fo the remission of sins" is exactly what John proclaimed in Mark 1:4. Nothing has changed. Rather there had simply been the historical development of the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ, followed by the outpouring of the Spirit. The Kingdom was no longer simply "at hand" as it had been with John; now the time had come to actually offer it to Israel.

    And even after Pentecost those who refused to be baptized stood as condemned before God as did those in Luke 7:30, for Peter goes on:

    "For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation." (Acts 2:39-40)

    This basic issue of gathering together the believing remnant of Israel - the "little flock: of Luke 12:32 - runs through the ministries of John, Jesus Christ, and the Twelve in early acts. This "little flock" represented the nucleus of the governmental authority for the coming kingdom. Those in Israel who refused to "repent and be baptized" - to identify themselves as those who had changed their minds about Christ being their Messiah through baptism of repentance for he remission of sins - were to be "destroyed from among the people." (Acts 3:23)

    It is of this little flock of Jewish believer that Peter later writes,

    "But ye are a chosen generation, a roal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light" (1 Peter 2:9)

    Again, in Scripture, water baptism is a ceremonil cleansing that pertained to the kingdom promised to the nation of Israel.

    If water baptism is thus associated with cleansing the nation of Israel for its ministry in her kingdom, where does the baptism of Gentiles under the commisision of Matt. 28:19 fit in? Even here, water baptism is again demonstrated to symbolize cleansing - and again clearly associated with Israel's kingdom.

    Remember that the priests were not the only people to be baptized. In connection with the cleansing of lepers, Lev. 14:9 instructs: "....Also he shall wash his flesh in water and he shall be clean."

    The "nations" of Matthew 28:19 were of course considered "unclean" by Israel and thus must be baptized - be cleansed - in order to gain access to Israel's kingdom and acceptance into God's favor.

    Both Israel and the Gentiles needed to acknowledge their need of cleansing. The former in order to be worthy to minister the things of God; the latter to be the recipient of those things.

    In this dispensation of grace, faith in the shed blood of Christ is all that is needed to be saved. A new baptism emerged to take the place of water baptism - that is the baptism into one body - the Body of Christ.

    Understanding of right division of Scripture will show us what God expects of us in this dispensation of grace. And I don't believe that water baptism has a place in it.

    Grace and peace to all.

    Comment


    • #17
      What is a believer's view of baptism?

      Hi everyone,

      Over the last 10 or so years I've engaged in discussion on baptism with many Christians in many places. I have to be honest, I haven't been baptised in a church or by another believer simply because of some differences I've had with their approach.

      If anyone has insight or time, I'd like to talk about Christian baptism and what it is. Scripture references are always appreciated.

      My main interest is "why does the Christian church teach the current thoughts about baptism?"

      Comment


      • #18
        Originally posted by Pleye View Post

        My main interest is "why does the Christian church teach the current thoughts about baptism?"
        Depends on the Church, some teach it as essential for salvation (not scriptural).
        There are a variety of beliefs, what have you been taught and what questions do you have in particular. This may help the thread from wondering all over the place.
        There is One King, and He is not this guy. sigpic

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        • #19
          baptism??

          We are human beings and we are going to look at things with a human view, but I believe baptism is an act of obedience. Jesus was baptized and that is good enough for me. Is it essential for salvation? I don't think so. There are cases where it is impossible because of disabilities. But I believe that people who are physically and mentally able should be baptized out of obedience to Jesus.
          Have you prayed about it? Do you feel the Holy Spirit dealing with you to be baptized? The first step in learning what you should do is study the Bible in regards to being baptized and then praying for guidance.
          betty

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          • #20
            I had studied it many years ago so many of my thoughts may be gone.

            My primary concern is that every church I went to said that baptism is simply "an outward expression of your faith." I don't believe that Scripture supports that view. No one I talked to at the churches was able to Scripturally support that but they said "that is what the church teaches."

            The last church I was at I asked the same question and got the same answer.

            I was really wondering if there is anyone on the board who believes, or whose church teaches, a more Scriptural view of baptism rather than "it is simply an outward expression of your faith."

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by Pleye View Post
              I had studied it many years ago so many of my thoughts may be gone.

              My primary concern is that every church I went to said that baptism is simply "an outward expression of your faith." I don't believe that Scripture supports that view. No one I talked to at the churches was able to Scripturally support that but they said "that is what the church teaches."

              The last church I was at I asked the same question and got the same answer.

              I was really wondering if there is anyone on the board who believes, or whose church teaches, a more Scriptural view of baptism rather than "it is simply an outward expression of your faith."
              My belief re: Baptism is in line with this article, backed up by scripture of course!

              Originally posted by Way of Life Encyclopedia

              BAPTISM - IMMERSION

              In the N.T., baptism always means immersion in water except when the passage refers to Spirit baptism.

              What Is the Requirement for Baptism?

              The requirement for baptism is repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Act 8:36-37; Act 2:38-41).

              What Is the Proper Mode of Baptism?

              In the N.T., baptism always means immersion in water except when the passage refers to Spirit baptism. (1) The early Christians baptized by going down into the water and coming up out of the water (Act 8:38-39). John the Baptist needed much water for baptism (Joh 3:23). Jesus Christ came up out of the water (Mat 3:16). (2) The word baptism means to immerse or dip and is called "burial" in Rom 6:4 and Col 2:12. There is no N.T. support for the practice of sprinkling or pouring. Both of these practices corrupt the proper symbolism of the ordinance.

              What Is the Meaning of Baptism?

              Water baptism is a picture and public testimony of spiritual realities. It is called a "figure" in 1Pet 3:21. (1) Baptism is a public testimony of repentance and faith in Christ (Act 8:34-38; Act 16:30-34; Act 2:37-38).(2) Baptism identifies one with Christ and depicts salvation-dying with Christ and being raised to eternal life with Him (Rom 6:3-6). Baptism shows the Gospel-the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

              What Is the Purpose of Baptism?

              It is not for salvation, but is a public testimony of faith in Christ and a picture of the gospel. To interpret the Bible properly, the Bible teacher must "compare spiritual things with spiritual" (1Cor 2:13). The false teacher, though, takes verses out of context and uses isolated verses to overthrow the clear teaching of the Bible as a whole. He puts one definition on a Bible word and then forces that definition into all passages, regardless of the context. That is what those do who teach that baptism is a part of salvation.

              False teachers use Joh 3:5 to teach the heresy of baptismal regeneration, claiming that to be "born of water" refers to salvation. For the following reasons, we know this is not true: (1) The passage says absolutely nothing about baptism. (2) Jesus is contrasting the natural birth with the spiritual birth. Thus "born of water" refers to the tiny unborn baby enclosed in a sack of water in his mother's womb; and when the water breaks he is born of water. (3) In this same passage, Christ taught that salvation is by faith alone and not by ritual or works (Joh 3:14-18,36).

              False teachers use Act 2:38 to overthrow all of the rest of the New Testament's teaching about baptism and salvation. How do we know that Ac 2:38 is not saying that baptism removes sins? First of all, we must understand that "baptism for the remission of sins" can mean one of two things: it can mean baptism "in order for" sins to be remitted, or it can mean baptism "because of" sins already remitted (Luk 5:13-14). In other words, Act 2:38 could mean that baptism takes away sin or it could just as easily mean that baptism merely follows the forgiveness of sins. How we know that it is the latter? (1) We know Peter was saying baptism follows the remissions of sins because the rest of the book of Acts shows baptism following faith and forgiveness (Act 8:35-38; Act 10:43-44, Act 10:47; Act 16:30-33). (2) We know this because Peter himself said baptism is not salvation but is a figure of salvation (1Pet 3:20-21). (3) We know this because Paul said baptism is not the gospel (1Cor 1:17; 1 Cor 15:1-4). It is the gospel that is the power of God unto salvation (Rom 1:16). (4) We know this because Mrk 16:16 says that God's judgment comes because of unbelief rather than because of lack of baptism.

              False teachers also use Act 22:16. In light of all of the rest of the New Testament's teaching on this subject, we know that this verse means that Paul's sins were washed away when he called upon the name of the Lord and not when he was baptised (Rom 10:13).

              False teachers also 1Pet 3:21, yet this verse plainly shows the error of baptismal regeneration. Baptism is a figure, a symbol, a picture. Baptism is not a part of salvation; it is symbolic of salvation. We are saved, not by water going over our bodies, but by faith in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

              What Follows Scriptural Baptism?

              In Act 2:41-42 baptism is seen as a door into the local church. Baptist churches, in following the pattern of the Jerusalem church, receive members upon their public profession of faith and scriptural baptism.

              Who Has the Authority to Baptize?

              Baptism is a church ordinance and proper New Testament churches which are sound in the New Testament faith have the authority to baptize. We see in Act 2:38-41, in the first mention of Christian baptism, that baptism is done in the context of the church.

              In Summary

              To summarize, scriptural baptism has -

              A proper subject: A sinner who has repented and believed in Jesus Christ.

              A proper mode: Immersion in water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

              A proper purpose: A public testimony of faith in Christ and a picture of the gospel.

              A proper authority: A New Testament church that is sound in doctrine and practice.

              Comment


              • #22
                Originally posted by Pleye View Post
                My primary concern is that every church I went to said that baptism is simply "an outward expression of your faith." I don't believe that Scripture supports that view. No one I talked to at the churches was able to Scripturally support that but they said "that is what the church teaches."

                The last church I was at I asked the same question and got the same answer.

                I was really wondering if there is anyone on the board who believes, or whose church teaches, a more Scriptural view of baptism rather than "it is simply an outward expression of your faith."
                So, what view do you believe is scriptural?

                Thanks to sweeetlilgurlie on Narniaweb for the sig

                Comment


                • #23
                  I thought the earlier post was quite good.

                  It is not baptism with water that saves, but the baptism of the holy spirit which comes with the confession of faith and true acceptance of Christ as your Lord and Saviour.

                  Water baptism is something that Christ instructed his disciples to do and which Christ did himself through John the Baptist - and so we should do it, and should want to do it, out of obedience as a sign of our faith and public expression of our faith. However, I do not believe that scripture supports the idea that Baptism is a requirement of salvation. In fact, if you recall the thief on the cross who called out to Jesus from the cross - Jesus told him he would be in paradise with Christ that day - yet he was not, and would not be baptized with water.

                  We are not saved through works or acts (physical baptism) but through faith - works (including the desire to be baptized) will be evidence of, and follow after, our faith (see james)

                  I do believe that water baptism should, therefore, be something done as an adult (at least when old enough to knowing accept Christ as Lord and Saviour - this age may vary - for some, this may be during childhood).

                  I'm sure there will be many varying views on this as the understanding of Baptism differs among denominations within the Christian faith.
                  Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Beth gave me a lot of information to look over there so I'll have to take some time with this but I wanted to answer Kliska (cool name by the way).

                    Without having the advantage of reminding myself of my previous study I can say only that I believe that the current teaching that baptism is "simply an outward expression" is not Scriptural.

                    Also, I believe their may be a component to baptism that we don't understand.

                    The article above says:

                    False teachers use Act 2:38 to overthrow all of the rest of the New Testament's teaching about baptism and salvation.
                    Likewise, I don't think we can throw out Acts 2:38 from our study of baptism either.

                    In other words, Act 2:38 could mean that baptism takes away sin or it could just as easily mean that baptism merely follows the forgiveness of sins. How we know that it is the latter? (1) We know Peter was saying baptism follows the remissions of sins because the rest of the book of Acts shows baptism following faith and forgiveness
                    The real problem I have is also reflected in this article when it says "baptism is a public testimony."

                    Water baptism is a picture and public testimony of spiritual realities. It is called a "figure" in 1Pet 3:21. (1) Baptism is a public testimony of repentance and faith in Christ (Act 8:34-38; Act 16:30-34; Act 2:37-38).
                    My simple logic says then when the translators were preparing these texts, why did they not use the translation that is in line with the rest of Acts? It has been 12 years since I have taken an NT Greek class and I never studied this, but I think there must be a reason.
                    I'm not sure that any of those verses support the claim that baptism is a public testimony?

                    Acts 8:34-38 doesn't. Philip baptized the Eunuch because he wanted to be baptised. He confirms that faith in Jesus is a requirement for baptism, the Eunuch testifies to this that he believes, and he gets baptized. No mention of other believers, he does it in a body of water which isn't a church, no mention of other people present, just the 2 men.

                    Acts 16:30-34 the mans family was baptised late at night. No mention of church, they were baptised in a house.

                    Acts 2:37-38 possibly because there were many present.

                    But none of these verses (unlike the article) state that the actual "meaning" of baptism is that it is simply a public expression.

                    In fact in Acts 2:38 above it says "38Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." That is what leads me to believe maybe more is happening than we understand, but in an attempt to know all we try to explain it away. I'm certainly not above stating that I don't know all

                    Hopefully that helps give some insight as to where I was hoping the discussion would head.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Pleye View Post
                      Beth gave me a lot of information to look over there so I'll have to take some time with this but I wanted to answer Kliska (cool name by the way).

                      Without having the advantage of reminding myself of my previous study I can say only that I believe that the current teaching that baptism is "simply an outward expression" is not Scriptural.

                      Also, I believe their may be a component to baptism that we don't understand.
                      The article above says:



                      Likewise, I don't think we can throw out Acts 2:38 from our study of baptism either.



                      The real problem I have is also reflected in this article when it says "baptism is a public testimony."



                      I'm not sure that any of those verses support the claim that baptism is a public testimony?

                      Acts 8:34-38 doesn't. Philip baptized the Eunuch because he wanted to be baptised. He confirms that faith in Jesus is a requirement for baptism, the Eunuch testifies to this that he believes, and he gets baptized. No mention of other believers, he does it in a body of water which isn't a church, no mention of other people present, just the 2 men.

                      Acts 16:30-34 the mans family was baptised late at night. No mention of church, they were baptised in a house.

                      Acts 2:37-38 possibly because there were many present.

                      But none of these verses (unlike the article) state that the actual "meaning" of baptism is that it is simply a public expression.

                      In fact in Acts 2:38 above it says "38Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." That is what leads me to believe maybe more is happening than we understand, but in an attempt to know all we try to explain it away. I'm certainly not above stating that I don't know all

                      Hopefully that helps give some insight as to where I was hoping the discussion would head.
                      Pleye,

                      I've always felt this too.....but am no closer to understanding what it is.

                      I was saved a full 5 years before I was baptised and must admit I never really had a prompting to do it. I did it because I thought it would be pleasing to Jesus rather than because I felt led.

                      I was taught that it was a public profession of my faith, but even while I was being baptised I felt there was a greater significance to it that I wasn't able to grasp. And, if it was being done as a public profession of my faith, then it was pretty redundant, seeing as how I had already been publicly professing my faith for 5 years!

                      No explanation, not even those using scripture, has ever brought true revelation for me. Lots of people just give the stock answer and are sort of uncomfortable if you want to go deeper, ya know?

                      I've just had to turn it over to the Lord and trust that it will be one of those things He'll reveal to me in His timing.......maybe through this discussion?

                      Thanks for bringing it up.
                      Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith... (Hebrews 12:2)

                      Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ...(Philippians 1:6)

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        While I have also been taught it was a public expression of my faith, I have come to believe that it could also be a "cleansing" along the lines of the Jewish Mikva.

                        The high priests went through ritual cleansing, women must go through ritual cleansing each month and it also appears to be required by Brides before marriage etc.

                        I just now went to google and found this wonderful article there:

                        http://www.allisrael2020.org/resourc...kveh_rite.html

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Pleye View Post
                          Likewise, I don't think we can throw out Acts 2:38 from our study of baptism either.
                          Most quote verse 38 but fail to not what verse 41 states:

                          41Those who accepted his message were baptized

                          Baptism by water followed faith.

                          What baptism allows us to be placed in the body of Christ? Baptism of the Spirit:

                          13For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. (1 Cor. 12)

                          Who receives baptism of the Spirit? Only those who place their belief in Jesus as the Scriptures say:

                          38Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him." 39By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. (John 7)

                          13And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession—to the praise of his glory. (Eph. 1)

                          Romans 8 is clear:

                          And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.

                          One can be baptized with water and not be saved, however, one cannot receive baptism of the Spirit unless they are truly saved. Why? Because baptism by water is performed by men who do not know the heart while baptism of the Spirit is performed by God who does. What does Acts 10 record:

                          44While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. 45The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles. 46For they heard them speaking in tongues[a] and praising God.

                          Then Peter said, 47"Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water? They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have." 48So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.


                          Note they had already received baptism of the Spirit before they received baptism by water thus proving water baptism is not necessary for salvation. Why then to men get baptized with water? In obedience to a command of Jesus (Matt. 28:19-20).

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            What is a believer's view of baptism?

                            Well here is my attempt at an answer.

                            DJ did a fine job dealing with the salvation/spirit portion of the question, so, no need to reinvent the wheel. Also the Acts 2:38 is best understood by the rest of the context of the verses, as DJ also pointed out.

                            Our church does it’s Baptisms at the beach, we do so openly so people there can see what is going on. It gives great opportunity for us to witness to the whomsoevers that are watching.

                            We tell the people that standing by that, yes, it is an outward expression of an inward reality. It is symbolic of the old man being buried and the Baptized person being raised in the newness of life. Precisely what took place when we were born again. Paul gives us a look at the mentality and draws an awesome visual in;

                            Romans 6:1-11

                            1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? 3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
                            5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died has been freed from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, 9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
                            Now, most of us when we got saved couldn’t wait to tell someone/everyone what Jesus did in us. We practices in the mirror, to the dog, we used the backbrush in the shower to hone our skills, like we were Billy Graham (come on, some of you did, admit it ) I digress, that excitement about salvation is and should be the motivation for what we do. We want to say out loud I have been saved, and the act is obedience to the word. Also as important is, Jesus loved us, saved us, and we have been taken from death to life. Therefore we are being Baptized as an expression of what has happened in us.

                            Hope that helps
                            There is One King, and He is not this guy. sigpic

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              It represents you being a sinner then emerging, with your sins washed away. As Christ's shed blood on the cross did for us. Being baptized does not any way give you salvation. "no one comes to the father except through Jesus Christ". You can be baptized a million times, but there is no salvation in baptism. John the Baptist baptized Jesus you should follow the example set my Jesus.

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Lot's of great material here. I'm in the beginning of a busy day so I can't answer in full until this evening but I wanted to say this.

                                The main teaching says this is an outward expression of something inside. It also says this is only a "public expression" of our faith, or whatever else. Still others say that this is in obedience to Jesus because Jesus did it so should we.

                                So in that case how can we reconcile these?

                                We should be baptized because Jesus was. But did Jesus get baptized just to show onlookers what forgiveness of his sins looked like? No, because he was sinless. I also don't believe Jesus was baptized as a symbol. I believe Jesus was baptized to fulfill prophecy.

                                As pointed out it appears that many of the baptisms that were performed in Acts did so in homes, lakes, etc without the benefit of other people to see, and that negates the entire teaching that this is to be "simply a public expression of our faith."

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